DBS Corporate Multi-Currency account: Fees, exchange rates and more

Elle Kasser
18.09.21
5 minute read

If you’re a business owner with customers, contactors, suppliers or team members based overseas, having a multi-currency account makes sense. You’ll be able to send and receive payments in a range of currencies with ease, and hold your money in the currencies which make sense for your business.

If you’re considering the DBS Corporate Multi-Currency account for your business you’re in the right place. This guide walks through the DBS Corporate Multi-Currency account charges and exchange rates you need to know about, and introduces an alternative for comparison - the Wise Business multi-currency account.

📝Table of contents:

DBS Corporate Multi-Currency account overview

The DBS Corporate Multi-Currency account¹ lets business owners hold and transact in 13 different currencies from the same account. You can get paid by customers and clients in their preferred currency, run payroll for international team members, and pay your suppliers based overseas without needing to worry about currency exchange. Simply receive, fund or convert the currencies you need in your account, to use when you need them.

Using a multi-currency account can be a good way of cutting down admin time and costs, as you don’t need to open several different accounts - and pay the respective fees - to deal in a range of currencies.

Let’s take a look at the available currencies for DBS corporate account holders:

  • Singapore dollars
  • US dollars
  • Australian dollars
  • Canadian dollars
  • Hong Kong dollars
  • New Zealand dollars
  • British pounds
  • Norwegian krone
  • Swedish krona
  • Swiss francs
  • Euros
  • Japanese yen

To open your account you’ll need an initial minimum deposit of 3,000 SGD - or the equivalent in another eligible currency. Once your account is up and running, hold 10,000 SGD or the currency equivalent to avoid the monthly fall below fee.

Accounts come with access to DBS IDEAL for online and mobile banking options.


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DBS Corporate Multi-Currency account charges and exchange rates

Let’s take a look at an overview of the charges you need to know about to open and maintain your DBS Corporate account. It’s helpful to know that some charges apply only to specific business types - check out the full details online or when you speak to DBS service representatives about opening your account.

Service/Fee type DBS Corporate Multi-Currency account charge¹ ²
Set up fee Account set up fees may apply for some business types, but are not a standard charge
Monthly account fee Monthly account fees may apply for some business types, but are not a standard charge
Annual account fee 40 SGD
Fall below fee 40 SGD/month - hold the currency equivalent of at least 10,000 SGD to avoid this
Internet and mobile banking Free
Debit card Free
Cheque book Free
Interest charges for foreign currency balances You may need to pay a fee to hold a balance in EUR, CHF or JPY
Cross border remittances Send payment electronically: 1/8% commission or fee in lieu of exchange + 20 SGD cable charge Send payment in person: 1/8% commission or fee in lieu of exchange + 35 SGD cable charge Receive payment: 10 SGD
Foreign currency cash withdrawals 1.5% for US dollar cash withdrawals
Account closure fee 50 SGD if you close within 6 months of opening

Exchange rates

DBS - like all banks and international payment providers - can choose the exchange rates offered to customers. If you need to switch between different currencies in your DBS Corporate Multi-Currency account, it’s important to check the rate that will be applied.

It’s common to find that exchange rates used for retail transactions include a markup or margin on the mid-market exchange rate. This is an extra fee - usually a percentage increase - in the exchange rate applied, compared to the rate you’ll find using an online currency converter or a Google search.

Compare the exchange rate you’re offered by DBS against the one you find with an online currency converter. If there’s a difference it’s probably because there’s a markup being used. This can push up the overall costs of the transaction and make it harder to see what you’re really paying for currency conversion.

It’s worth knowing that while exchange rate markups are extremely common, not all business account providers use them. Check out the Wise Business multi-currency account for currency exchange which uses the mid-market exchange rate and low, transparent fees every time.


DBS Corporate Multi-Currency account FAQ

Still not sure if the DBS multi-currency account is the right one for your business? Here are the answers to a few of the common questions about opening and using the DBS Corporate Multi-Currency account.

How is my money insured with a DBS Corporate Multi-Currency account?

Singapore dollar deposits are insured by the Singapore Deposit Insurance Corporation up to 75,000 SGD.¹ However, foreign currency deposits are not covered by this insurance.


How do I apply for a DBS corporate multi-currency account?

Depending on your business type you may be able to apply entirely online. If you’re a single director or sole proprietor with a DBS or POSB account already you could apply online and be using your account the very next day.

Other applicants - including businesses with multiple directors or partners - can start the application online, then wait for DBS to call to discuss the options available. You’ll need to submit a set of paperwork to verify and support your application before you can get started.

How do I activate a new currency?

The default currency for the DBS Multi-Currency Corporate account is SGD. However a new currency balance can be opened when you receive a payment in that currency, request to activate the currency, or receive a cheque book in that currency.

Can I change my SGD Business account to a multi-currency account with DBS?

If you already have a DBS business account and wish to switch to a multi-currency option you can do so by submitting a request from. You’ll even be able to keep the same account details as before.

Can I withdraw foreign currency from a DBS corporate multi-currency account?

You can withdraw USD cash from your account for a 1.5% fee. You’ll also be able to withdraw money in a foreign currency from ATMs when you travel, using your debit card. Finally, you can send international payments from your DBS multi-currency account, for a fee.

Building a business today often means being able to connect with customers, team members and suppliers around the globe. A multi-currency account can make that easier and often cheaper. As well as the DBS Corporate Multi-Currency account, check out the Wise Business multi-currency account as an alternative way to send, receive and spend in foreign currencies, for less.


Sources:

  1. Corporate Multi-Currency Account | DBS SME Banking
  2. Pricing Guide PDF under ‘Fees’ section

Sources checked on 7th September 2021


This publication is provided for general information purposes only and is not intended to cover every aspect of the topics with which it deals. It is not intended to amount to advice on which you should rely. You must obtain professional or specialist advice before taking, or refraining from, any action on the basis of the content in this publication. The information in this publication does not constitute legal, tax or other professional advice from TransferWise Limited or its affiliates. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. We make no representations, warranties or guarantees, whether express or implied, that the content in the publication is accurate, complete or up to date.

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